What is the Programme like?
The Conference Interpreting Master's Degree Programme is full-time and lasts two semesters. No part-time form is offered.
Students must know at least one “active” foreign language (English, French or German) with which to work in both directions – from the foreign language to Bulgarian and from Bulgarian to the foreign language. In addition, students may also work with a “passive language” – a foreign language from which to interpret into Bulgarian.
What does the Programme include?
The main and most important part of the Programme are the interpreting classes, which focus exclusively on practice and exercises. They include the various interpretation techniques – consecutive (with and without notes), simultaneous and some other similar forms such as sight translation, chuchotage (whispered interpreting) and liaison.
Interpreting classes are very intensive and require mandatory attendance. They are held on academic days, usually after 17:30, by agreement with the group and teachers, so that they are, to a certain extent, possible to combine with other types of employment. At the same time, applicants must bear in mind that they are expected to spend time for self-training and attend other courses within the Programme.
In addition to the Interpreting sessions, the Master's Degree Programme in Conference Interpreting also includes:
- • A Glossary Making Course;
- • A Language Enhancement Course for active and passive foreign languages;
- • Bulgarian Language;
- • Professional Ethics;
- • Diplomatic Seminar;
- • Introduction to European Institutions and Policies;
- • Self-training.
Who is teaching in the Programme?
The Master's Degree course teachers are a team of professional interpreters active on the local market. Many of them also regularly work in the EU institutions. We have sessions with invited speakers: established Bulgarian and foreign interpreters and experts from different areas of public life.
The Programme is supported by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for interpretation and the Directorate-General for Logistics and Interpretation for Conferences (DG LINC). This means that there are also staff interpreters from EU institutions who deliver four three-day pedagogical assistances per academic year. Virtual Consecutive Interpreting trainings are held together with the European Parliament and the European Commission.
Interpreters from the European Commission and the European Parliament are also part of the board of examiners at all state examinations and often at the semestral exams.
What degree do graduates receive?
The Master's Degree Programme ends with a State Examination with the participation of representatives of the European Commission and the European Parliament.
Successful graduates of the Programme are awarded a Master's Degree in English/French/German Philology Diploma for a Conference Interpreter with English/French/German by Sofia University's Faculty of Classical and Modern Philology.
This Diploma can be used by graduates to apply for an accreditation test with the EU institutions, eliminating the need to prove professional experience. Upon passing this test, the Masters are entered on the interinstitutional list of accredited external freelance interpreters.